Shakshuka

This recipe was given to me by my buddy Jason. He and I were chatting and chatting and then I realized the time. I said oh no! I wont have time to cook a good dinner for the people I had coming over. He shot me this recipe (Here is the original recipe video) and my dinner turned out fantastic! Thank you Jason! So let’s get to it and start learning about making Shakshuka!

Though it's North African in origin, these days shakshuka is popular throughout the middle east (particularly in Israel, where it may as well be one of the national dishes) and in hip neighborhood diners all over the coastal U.S. Given its versatility, it's easy to see why. It's quick, it's simple, it's easy to scale up or down, it works for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, or a midnight snack.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (45ml), plus more for drizzling

  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 large red pepper (bell pepper for milder heat, or red horned pepper for hotter)

  • 1 fresh small hot chili, such as jalapeño, Serrano, or Fresno

  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (15g) sweet Hungarian or smoked Spanish paprika

  • 2 teaspoons (8g) whole or ground cumin seed

  • 1 (28-ounce; 800ml) can of whole peeled tomatoes, crushed by squeezing between your fingers (see note above)

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Large handful minced cilantro, parsley, or a mix

  • 6 eggs

  • For Serving: Sliced oil-cured black olives, feta cheese, or artichoke hearts (all optional) Crusty bread

Notes:

To crush the tomatoes, transfer to a large bowl and squeeze through your fingers to create a chunky puree. Alternatively, leave whole, add to pan, and use a pastry blender to cut the tomatoes directly in the pan.

DIRECTIONS:

1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over high heat until shimmering. Add onion, red pepper, and chili, spread into an even layer, and cook without moving until the vegetables on the bottom are deeply browned and beginning to char in spots, about 6 minutes. Stir and repeat. Continue to cook until the vegetables are fully softened and spottily charred, about 10 minutes total. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until softened and fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add paprika and cumin and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Immediately add tomatoes and stir to combine (see note above). Reduce heat to a bare simmer and simmer for 10 minutes, then season to taste with salt and pepper and stir in half of cilantro or parsley.

2. Using a large spoon, make a well near the perimeter of the pan and break an egg directly into it. Spoon a little sauce over the edges of the egg white to partially submerge and contain it, leaving yolk exposed. Repeat with remaining five eggs, working around the pan as you go. Season eggs with a little salt, cover, reduce heat to lowest setting, and cook until eggs whites are barely set and yolks are still runny, 5 to 8 minutes.

3. Sprinkle with remaining cilantro or parsley, along with any of the optional toppings. Serve immediately with crusty bread.